EXECUTIVE INSIGHTS - BLOG
This month marked a transformation in our corporate culture. We pivoted to a casual dress code – a first in our company’s 45-year
history. Managing change in the workplace is exhilarating. But it can also be met with much resistance, particularly from tenured
employees who are part of the senior leadership.
Change Management is Necessary
When deciding to make the change, I faced a dilemma: Should we continue operating the way that has worked for us for over four
decades? Or do I recognize the changing landscape and innovate so we’re leading, not following?
I turned to the facts to support my decision. Millennials already form 25% of the American workforce and by 2020, will encompass
50% of the global workforce. Generation Y is transforming global workplaces at a dizzying pace. With Instagram, Facebook and
blogging, many naturally share their personal lives with peers and personal friends alike. The lines between our home and
professional selves have blurred in the age of the “selfie”.
I realized that requiring daily business attire was not appropriate in the casual environment we are recruiting in today. Our candidates
and clients increasingly prefer to work with people who present their most authentic selves at work. Employees are also most engaged
when they work for companies with values that align with their own.
Staying in Front of Change
I believe managing through change starts with you. At first, I thought my idea would be met with jubilation. But some members of my
leadership team weren’t convinced.
When I announced the transformation, I was direct, transparent and communicative. Being visible and approachable has been a key
part of my leadership strategy.
In my experience of managing people through change, I have learned that it can be challenging and uncomfortable. But if you’re not in
front of it, people will think you have something to hide. Employees become fearful when they sense their leadership team is
In support, I have been coming to work in jeans!
The results have been astounding. This transformation has brought our teams closer, and positioned us for the workplace of the
future. Our metamorphosis from a conservative brand to a vibrant and authentic environment aligns much more with who we are
Have you had any experience in change management? What did you learn?
Managing Change in the Workplace
Andi Jennings, CEO